Luke 10:27 - The Greatest Commandment.
Luke 10:27 - The Greatest Commandment.
Luke 10:27 (KJV) Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy
heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all
thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.
To love God in the sense here stated and implied is to dedicate
to His service one's entire being, the affections, the life, the
physical powers, and the intellect. [SDA Commentary]
The form of the lawyer's answer was entirely correct; what he
lacked was spiritual insight into the application of this principle to
his life. He knew the letter of the law, but not its spirit. This
knowledge comes only when the principles of the law are applied to the
life........Legal righteousness never satisfies the soul, for
there is something
vital lacking until the love of God takes control of the life. Only as
a man fully surrenders himself to the influence of that love can
he truly keep the spirit of the law. [SDA Commentary]
God's requirement for eternal life is to love Him supremely and
to love your neighbor as much as yourself. No one can love in these
ways without the help which God gives through faith in Christ.
True holiness is wholeness in the service of God. This is the
condition of true Christian living. Christ asks for an unreserved
consecration, for undivided service. He demands the heart, the mind, the soul,
the strength. Self is not to be cherished. He who lives to himself
is not a Christian.
Love must be the principle of action. Love is the underlying
principle of God's government in heaven and earth, and it must be the
foundation of the Christian's character. This alone can make and keep him
steadfast. This alone can enable him to withstand trial and temptation.
And love will be revealed in sacrifice. The plan of redemption
was laid in sacrifice--a sacrifice so broad and deep and high that
it is immeasurable. Christ gave all for us, and those who receive
Christ will be ready to sacrifice all for the sake of their Redeemer.
The thought of His honor and glory will come before anything else.
If we love Jesus, we shall love to live for Him, to present our
thank offerings to Him, to labor for Him. The very labor will be
light. For His sake we shall covet pain and toil and sacrifice. We
shall sympathize with His longing for the salvation of men. We shall
feel the same tender craving for souls that He has felt.
This is the religion of Christ. Anything short of it is a
deception. No mere theory of truth or profession of discipleship will save
any soul. We do not belong to Christ unless we are His wholly.
In the end we will be judged not by the creed we hold but by the
life we live. [Barclay Commentary]
Our greatest responsibility is to obey the greatest of the
commandments, which the man quoted accurately from Lev. 19:18 and Deut. 6:5.
But we cannot rightly love God or our neighbor until we have God's
love in our hearts (Rom. 5:5; 1 John 4:19). [Wiersbe Expository
We must love God with all our hearts, must look upon him as the
best of beings, in himself most amiable, and infinitely perfect and
excellent; as one whom we lie under the greatest obligations to, both in
gratitude and interest. We must prize him, and value ourselves by our
elation to him; must please ourselves in him, and devote ourselves
entirely to him. Our love to him must be sincere, hearty, and fervent; it
must be a superlative love, a love that is as strong as death, but an
intelligent love, and such as we can give a good account of the grounds and
reasons of. It must be an entire love; he must have our whole souls, and
must be served with all that is within us. We must love nothing
besides him, but what we love for him and in subordination to him.
(Matthew Henry's Commentary)
We must love our neighbours as ourselves, which we shall easily
do, if we, as we ought to do, love God better than ourselves. We
must wish well to all and ill to none; must do all the good we can in
the world and no hurt, and must fix it as a rule to ourselves to do
to others as we would they should do to us; and this is to love our
neighbour as ourselves. (Matthew Henry's Commentary)
A person should be a neighbor to anyone he meets in need. [Bible
The help must be practical and not consist merely in feeling
sorry. . . Compassion, to be real, must issue in deeds. [Barclay
The point is simply that our neighbor is anybody who needs us,
anybody whom we can help. [Wiersbe Expository Outlines]
What we learn from Christ's story is that being a neighbor has
nothing to do with how near we live to others, or how similar our
religion or race. Being a neighbor depends simply on our humanity - and
on need. Anyone you or I come in contact with who has a need is
our neighbor. And to love our neighbor means to care enough to reach
out, and help in any way we can. [The 365-Day Devotional Commentary]
"Because we cannot see Christ we cannot express our love to Him;
but our neighbors we can always see, and we can do to them what, if
we saw Him, we would like to do to Christ." Mother Teresa [The
365-Day Devotional Commentary]
"What must I do to inherit eternal life?" The query contains a
contradiction. What does anyone do to inherit? Why, nothing! An inheritance is
something someone else has earned. An inheritance comes as a gift. . .
Inheritance is based on relationship, not on performance.
Phillips translates Jesus' reply: "Quite right. Do that and you
will live" (Luke 10:27).
But this of course is the problem. Do all that! Put all self
behind; love God purely and perfectly. Love others as you love yourself.
Do all that and you will live.
These words sounded doom to the questioner. He had been
convicted from his own lips. For he, as every person who has ever lived,
had fallen short of doing "all that." We have all had selfish
thoughts. We have all neglected to put God first. We have all hurt our
neighbors. [Victor Teacher's Commentary]
Those "experts in the Law" we meet so frequently in Luke are
rabbis, or sages, who devoted themselves to a study of the Old Testament
and the massive body of interpretations which by this time had grown
up around it.
The master interpreter of Judaism who now approached Jesus made
the typical mistake of members of his class. He asked, "What must I
do to inherit eternal life?"
When Jesus asked him his opinion, he rightly answered that
Scripture calls us to love God supremely, and to love our neighbors as
ourselves. These two requirements do sum up the religious and moral message
of the Old Testament. But being "right" created a terrible problem.
For Jesus then said, "Go and do it!"
"Go and do it" are words that confront everyone with the
impossibility of earning salvation. Many of the world's religions have a high
moral vision. But none provides believers with the ability they need
to "go and do" the good that faith defines.
In telling this expert in the Law of God to "go and do" what he
knew to be right, Jesus forced him to face the fact of his own
inadequacy, and invited him to look at the Scripture with new eyes. What
every person must seek is not more rules to follow in a vain attempt
to earn salvation, but a forgiving and loving God, who has made a
way for confessed sinners to come to Him. [The 365-Day Devotional